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Diagnostic Testing
Vascular (Blood Flow) Tests

Vascular (Blood Flow) Tests

Vascular (Blood Flow) Tests

Imaging (Radiology) Procedures

Duplex Ultrasound Scan

What is the test?

A duplex ultrasound scan is a noninvasive examination that uses color Doppler technology. Harmless high frequency sound waves bounce off of the body's internal structures and are processed electronically to yield information about blood flow and the condition of the arteries and veins. A duplex ultrasound is painless, there is no radiation involved, and there are no risks known to be associated with its use. This test is typically used to diagnose suspected artery disease and other vascular problems.

How do I prepare?

Please plan to arrive at your designated Imaging Services site 15 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment. There is no specific preparation for a duplex ultrasound scan of blood vessels in the arms, legs, and neck. It is best to wear loose-fitting clothing. If you are having a study of the blood vessels in your arms, we recommend wearing a tank top that exposes your shoulders, neck, and arms.

An ultrasound of the abdominal arteries and veins requires that you have nothing to eat or drink after your evening meal the night before your ultrasound. You may take your regular medicine with a small amount of water. Be sure to bring a list of your current medications with you when you come to the medical center for your test.

What can I expect during the procedure?

You may be asked to change into a gown, depending on the specific exam. You will be asked to lie on an examining table for 30 to 60 minutes. The vascular technician will apply some cool, clear gel to your skin. During the exam, an ultrasound transducer (which looks like a wand) will be moved lightly up and down your skin where the gel has been applied. Images created from the sound waves will appear on a video monitor. The sounds and images of blood moving through the vessels are saved in the computer for analysis by a vascular specialist.

How and when will I get my test results?

Typically, within 48 hours a written report of your test results will be sent to your referring physician, who will review them with you. Additional time (3 to 5 days) may be required if we are comparing these test results to previous findings from another hospital.

Where is the test performed?

Duplex Ultrasound Scanning is performed at: Cayuga Medical Center, 101 Dates Drive off NYS Route 96 in Ithaca, and the Convenient Care Campus on Warren Road at Arrowwood Drive in Ithaca.

About our Imaging Services

Cayuga Medical Center has a commitment to and reputation for staying abreast of changing technology and our imaging equipment is state-of-the-art. Our range of services is comprehensive and we offer all imaging modalities found in major medical centers. Radiologists are on site at all three of our locations, which also distinguishes the level of service we provide.

Imaging Services is staffed by six-board certified radiologists, many of whom are subspecialists in areas such as neuroradiology, abdominal CT, and interventional procedures. Assisting them are experienced radiologic technologists, many of whom have completed advanced training and are certified in specialty modalities.

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